In most cases it is advisable to hire a professional to do the job. You don’t want to call into work on Monday because of an injured back from trying to lift garage door panels. But at the same time you want to have a beautiful garage fast and cheap.
Faux (that’s French for ‘false’) or fake garage door windows are your answer. Call them ‘faux (foe) garage door windows’, it just sounds better.
The Best Faux Garage Door Windows on the Market
Coach House Accents Simulated Garage Door Windows are tough to beat. One kit for a one-car garage comes with two 45.75-inch by 16.75-inch faux windows and they cost around $150. So you are looking a $300 investment for a two-car garage. Customers say that it takes about 1 hour to install one kit, but you really need to measure everything twice or three times to make sure they fit just right.
Some of the best features are the following:
- 15-year warranty
- They come in 3 colors, but you could paint them with latex paint.
- Comes with a mounting template to idiot-proof the installation.
- They are so thin, that they will not affect the opening and closing of the garage door.
- They are made of industrial grade plastic so that they last forever
Many reviews say that you are paying a bit too much for a fake garage door window kit. However, if you consider your opportunity cost, you are saving a ton of time compared to installing real inserts.
Also, these simulated garage windows are only the best alternative, if you garage panels are the right size. If your garage has a 9-inch or 18-inch short panel, then these are not the best alternative for you.
Security and Insulation
If you have real windows on your garage you increase the risk of thieves being able to peer into your garage, break the window, and somehow steal your valuables. They will have a hard time doing this if the window is fake.
Moreover, panels simply insulate better than real windows. So if you already have a well-insulated garage door (which would save you a lot of money), there is nothing to worry about. If anything the faux inserts from Coach House Accents may even increase insulation. Just make sure you put on the rubber stoppers on the end of the screws on the inside of the garage, to seal off those penetrations of the door.
Getting really secure and really insulated inserts will cost you much more than $150-300.
Before and After Video
Tips for Installation:
Tip 1: Measure the stamped area
First before you buy them, you just need to make sure your garage door panels are the right size. As stated above these faux garage door windows are 45.75-inch by 16.75-inch. This means you need a stamping area on your garage door that must be smaller in dimensions in order for the screws to be able to go into garage door and so that the stamping area doesn’t exceed the dimensions of the fake inserts.
The stamping area of a garage door the decorative indention that is “stamped” into the garage (if it is a steel or aluminum garage).
Tip 2: Are the screws long enough?
You may need to get new screws to avoid rust. They provide stainless steel screws. Some suggest you should get aluminum or galvanize screw, but stainless steel out performs galvanized screws, which just have a coating. Aluminum is good too, but stainless steel is stronger. So if you need to get longer or shorter screws at the home improvement store, just get stainless steel or aluminum screws. You may need to do this based on the thickness of the locations of where you will drill. This little detail could add an hour to your installation having to go to the store.
Tip 3: Use a level instead
If your garage is level then you could do without any measuring. First check along the horizontal folds of the garage, if it is level. Then check alone the vertical lines of the garage to see if they are level, too. If they are, then you can forgo having to do any measuring. You just need to rest the décor window frames on the level in the place where you want to drill them, while making sure it is centered over the stamped area, and then drill.
Tip 4: Get someone to help
It will be a billion times faster if you have someone holding the level and/or the faux window insert while doing the drilling. They are very light weight, so you could do this yourself, but a second hand is highly recommended.
Do not get those cheesy window decals. As soon as your neighbor gets close enough to them they will see you are cheap. The decals in this picture are from an Ebay product.
You want your garage to look like this:
And it is difficult to know if these faux inserts are very darkly tinted or fakes.